CHILD DEVELOPMENT AND MATURITY
Is your child growing well? Have you been focusing on your child's development and maturity? At 37 months, your child has grown to a preschooler. As mothers, nothing brings more joy than seeing your child growing up happy and well.
The early years of a child are incredibly critical for their development1. This is why it’s important to keep a close watch on your child’s growth. At the age of 3 onwards, your preschooler will continue to grow and mature. However, there is more to development than physical growth. When it comes to child maturity, factors such as social, emotional, cognitive, and language development are also at play. Mothers need to also keep an eye on these areas to see if their child is growing at the right pace.
Take a look at these milestones to see if your child’s maturity is on the right track.
COMMUNICATION AND LANGUAGE DEVELOPMENT
Communication and language development is all about how your child understands and communicates with the world at large. Maturity in this area is an indicator of their development in other areas such as physical (fine motor skills) and cognitive development2.
At the age of 3 your child should be able to5 6 7:
- Follow basic instructions (2 to 3 steps)
- Name things that are familiar to them
- Understand words such as “in,” “on,” “under” (spatial words)
- Know the names of family members and friends
- Say words like “I,” “you,” “me,” “we”
- Communicate well enough to be understood by strangers
- Produce 2-3 sentences in conversation
- Frequently asks why
- Understand the idea of “same” and “different”
- Master some basic grammar concepts (plural words)
- Tell stories
Encourage child development in this area by reading to them often as well as continuously talking to them. Ask your child questions like what stories or animals do they like. You can also ask them to point out the names of plants and animals they see around them during play.
SOCIAL AND EMOTIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Social and emotional development is all about your child learning to connect with other people. Good development in this area includes the ability to manage emotions, form relationships, and empathize with others. Great child maturity in this area translates to success in school, work, and life3.
When your child is at the age of 3, he/she should be able to5 6 7:
- Imitate adults and friends
- Show affection to friends and family without being told to do so
- Take turns during play
- Show concern to friends or family in distress
- Understand the concept of “mine,” “his,” and “hers”
- Show a wide range of emotions
- Separate from mom and dad without trouble
- Get upset when routine is greatly disturbed
- Dress and undress on their own or with little help
- Use the toilet independently during day time
- Like playing make-believe
- Play and cooperate with other kids
- Like new experiences
- Negotiate simple solutions to prevent conflict
- Be more independent
Moreover, kids often learn by imitating their parents and family members. Therefore, it is important that you serve as a role model for your child. Likewise, show them how to be patient, empathetic, and kind so they can emulate these qualities.
CHILD MATURITY IN COGNITIVE DEVELOPMENT
Cognitive development is all about how your child thinks, interacts, understands, and solves problems around them4. In addition, as your child grows, they will develop knowledge and skills that will help them find success in life. Nevertheless, try to encourage child maturity through song, dance and play.
At the age of 3 your child should be able to5 6 7:
- Work with toys that have buttons, levers, and moving parts
- Play make believe with dolls, animals, and other people
- Accomplish simple puzzles with 3-4 pieces
- Understand the concept of “two”
- Copy a circle with a pencil or a crayon
- Turn pages of books, one page at a time
- Stack and build towers with more than 6 blocks
- Open jar lids and doors
- Remember and retell stories from a book
- Name some colors
- Have a clearer understanding of time
In conclusion, you should be patient with your preschooler if they aren’t developing as quickly as you would like. Child maturity is a gradual process and each child grows at their own pace. Hence, it is best to consult with your pediatrician if you feel that your child is delayed in his or her development.
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1 Why the First Five Years of Child Development are so Important (2018) Retrieved August 20, 2020 from https://www.all4kids.org/news/blog/why-the-first-5-years-of-child-development-are-so-important/
2 What is Communication and Language Development (n.d.) Retrieved August 20, 2020 from https://helpmegrowmn.org/HMG/HelpfulRes/Articles/WhatCommunicationLang/index.html#:~:text=It%20means%20all%20the%20different,a%20reflection%20of%20cognitive%20development
3 What are Social-Emotional Skills (n.d.) Retrieved August 20, 2020 from https://pathways.org/topics-of-development/social-emotional/
4 What is Cognitive Development (n.d.) Retrieved August 20, 2020 from https://helpmegrowmn.org/HMG/HelpfulRes/Articles/WhatCognitiveDev/index.html
5 Important Milestones: Your Child by Three Years (2020) Retrieved August 20, 2020 from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/actearly/milestones/milestones-3yr.html
6 Your Child’s Development: 3 Years (2020) Retrieved August 20, 2020 from https://kidshealth.org/en/Parents/development-3yrs.html
7 Development Milestones: 3 to 4 Years Old (2009) Retrieved August 20, 2020 from https://www.healthychildren.org/English/ages-stages/preschool/Pages/Developmental-Milestones-3-to-4-Year-Olds.aspx